Aspiring young readers excel when they are surrounded by family and caretakers supporting them. Grandparents often play a vital role in a child’s success, sharing their love, experiences, and wisdom through stories and other activities. To celebrate Grandparents Day this year, LINC facilitated a reading celebration in honor of these significant figures in the lives of our children.
On Wednesday, September 6th, families logged in for a virtual party that featured games, music, crafts, and, of course, stories! Special guest and Senior Director of Family & Community Mobilization at LINC, Albania Jimenez led our bilingual read-aloud storytime of the hilarious tale, How to Babysit a Grandma (Como cuidar a tu abuela) by Jean Reagan and illustrated by Lee Wildish. In addition to her 21 years of work at LINC, Albania is a proud mother of two daughters and grandmother of seven young readers. One of her granddaughters and biggest fans, Corazón, even joined the program from the Dominican Republic.
In addition to reading Jean and Lee’s book, Albania shared her knowledge and experience as a grandparent in an interview with LINC staff. "[My abuela] taught us [her grandchildren] everything she knew…she wanted us to know what she was doing and explained everything to us. She encouraged us [to learn] how to read because she didn't know how to read. She asked us to read to her and in exchange she told us stories about her life. Because of my grandmother, I was able to speak up and read in the first grade."
During the program, participants played “guess that song,” a lively interactive game that sharpens listening skills, and children learned to make flowers with simple materials at home, to give as gifts to their grandparents. LINC staff shared practical, bite-size tips for encouraging a lifelong love of reading at home like reading in the language that you are most comfortable with, and using your own life stories, they don’t have to come from a book. We can learn so much from the different experiences that our families share. Grandparents are full of wisdom and knowledge, and our memories with them build cultural, emotional, and physical bonds.
Thank you to all the grandparents who partake in LINC programs all year long and help us make our mission stronger. We salute the vital contributions of grandparents around the world.
Spread the joy of reading with someone that you love! Register for LINC’s latest programs now.